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Nashville Skyline

Dear Kay,
Aw hell, we were knitting at the library yesterday. We ran out of chairs. Next month we’re just going to take over the lobby.
You learn a lot about people when you sit around and knit together. I can’t possibly capture it all, and I probably shouldn’t even try. Here are a few tidbits:
eggcozy.jpg
First egg cozy I’ve seen all year. (This is the famous Weekend Knitting egg cozy. I hate to say it, but it kind of looks like a small sweater to me. Most eggs don’t have arms, just sayin. Please don’t say anything to Cheryl about this.)
Cheryl had a lot to show this month–not only does this librarian organize this knitting group, she makes stuff like crazy.
knittingcircleapron.jpg
Cheryl is on the verge of some seriously coordinated apron/dishcloth work.
Cheryl reminded us about a great place online to buy last-minute gifts: Thistle Farms, maker of delicious-smelling balms and scents. The women who run the company are part of Magdalene, a residential program in Nashville for recovering prostitutes. An extraordinary program.
megmitten.jpg
Meg, who is a chef in town, was finishing up a pair of mittens for her four-year-old Henry. She felted a thrift-store sweater, traced Boy’s hands, stitched up the mittens, and as we watched, she added a ribbed cuff. They look like Warner Brothers cartoon mittens.
In the course of discussing mittens, the state of the restaurant business, and why it can be sort of tricky to write a knitting book while also writing a knitting blog, it came out that Meg’s husband is Paul Burch, a country/roots/bluegrassy/pop/modern musician. This was news to me–I have a lot of trouble keeping up, you know. Right this minute I’m listening to Paul singing “Little Glass of Wine” with Ralph Stanley, the bluegrass deity whose “O Death” was a big moment in the O Brother, Where Art Thou? soundtrack. Paul’s newest album is East to West–recorded in Mark Knopfler’s London studio, which is cool. Highly recommended.
knittingcirclepeggy.jpg
This trio was a total crack-up. Peggy, the one who’s knitting, gets the distance award this month. She’s in town visiting from Thomaston, Georgia (about an hour from Opelika, Alabama, to pin it down for you). Peggy’s daughters deposited mom at the library, told us all sorts of snarky/lovey things about their mom, then ditched out as fast as was polite. Peggy told us that she had a 50% success rate in teaching her children to knit. As far as I could tell, she had a 100% success rate in raising fine daughters.
mysteryyarn.jpg
Somebody, please provide provenance for this yarn. Cheryl had it and forgot what it is. It’s sock weight, and it’s gargeous. Isn’t it great?
knittingcircleneedles.jpg
Jennifer whipped out this inventory of knitting needles. She travels, always, with them. Her tote bag (which some might call a satchel, or valise, or suitcase, or portable warehouse the size of a large dog) is definitely apocalypse-ready. I think she has a bunch of Meals Ready to Eat in there.
Idle thought: we had a pair of midwives in our midst. Marecha and Lindsey-with-an-E need to start a midwifery blog, seeing as how they just finished their masters at Vanderbilt. I am fascinated by midwives.
Go ahead and mark your calendar for Monday, January 8, when we’ll be gathering at the downtown library again. We will be celebrating Elvis Presley’s birthday by reading whatever poems about Elvis we can dig up.
Love,
Ann

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40 Comments

40 Comments

  1. Yarn is…
    Aurora/Ornaghi Filati called Luna Park. (striped sock yarn)

  2. I wish I could get to Nashville and knit with y’all. I’ve never even been to Tennessee! What’s the matter with me?
    The felted mittens have prompted me to stop lurking and post the following confession: I have a 2.5-yr-old daughter and I have NEVER KNITTED SOMETHING FOR HER. I think this is partly because, since she was born, my time available for knitting has greatly decreased… but the only thing I’ve produced that she’s worn is a strawberry hat that I actually knit for some other kid but never delivered. Maybe I’ll knit her a scarf; then I can stop when my yarn or her patience run out, whichever comes first.

  3. I wish I lived closer to Nashville!

  4. See, even in the depths o’ the swealtering heat down here in GA, we knit. Yay for Peggy and the girls in TN from GA. I’ve never heard of anyone referencing Thomaston with Opelika. That cracked me up. :D
    Happy knitting.

  5. I am all for midwives! My daughter just had a baby at home w/ midwives and it all happened pretty quickly — no muss, no fuss (i.e., no drugs, no hospitals, no doctors). They were wonderful (and still are) throughout the process. My second daughter plans to follow suit when it’s her turn to have kids!
    I LOVE that yarn. Must get some. Glad you found its heritage.

  6. I don’t care whether eggs have arms or not. That is one stinkin’ CUTE egg cozy!!!

  7. note to self:
    get a bag of above mentioned yarn.
    swim in it.
    marvel at the color combo and it’s softness.
    wonder how the colors look so wonderful together.
    toss yarn on bed and use as pillows.
    juggle with them.
    love them in general.
    then…
    …maybe…
    make a pair so socks. and some hats and scarves out of it. just maybe.

  8. I like it! We’ve gone from months old projects and Jack White to other-people’s-knitting. I think you’re doing a fine job writing a knitting blog while writing a book (at least I assume that’s what you’re doing presently). I still suspicious about the shoe phone though. :)
    I’d be scared to carry all those needles around with me. Is it covered under home owner’s insurance???

  9. So, Cheryl the Librarian, organizes this knitting group and gets to knit with you, too? All the while getting paid? I wonder if I could try that here at my library!

  10. Oh!! I SO wish I could come to Nashville to celebrate Elvis’ Birthday. Wish there were more Elvis knitting patterns.

  11. I’d love to get a hunka hunka library knitting next month. Maybe I’ll surprise ya.
    I hope you took that picture of Peggy & Daughters on a hi-res setting so you can send it to her so they can frame it. It’s an awesome portrait of snarky/lovey mother-daughter goodness.
    We need to somehow ‘silence’ this commenter ‘Laura’ who is wise to your tricks with the Jack White and the Other People’s Knitting. Meanwhile, I’m trusting that you’re getting the book done. Right?
    Right?
    xoxooxox Kay

  12. PS Nashville Skyline = Kay’s Favorite Dylan Album.
    Which is something. I like it even better than Blood on the Tracks.
    When not knitting scarves, I’ll blog about how much I love Bob Dylan.
    Love all the musical interconnectiness you have in Nashville. Now I’ll be wailing Oh Death all afternoon.
    Yours in constant sorrow,
    xox Kay

  13. Paul Burch is a wonderful musician (and how clever of him to marry a great knitter).

  14. Hey now! i (daughter #1) stayed for my whole lunch hour! We just let mom (Peggy) enjoy the rest of the knitting time. ;-)
    Snarky, yes. Lovey, yes. *grins*
    Would love a copy of that pic, actually – ‘twould make a great Christmas present! haha ;-) You could even send it as a file . . .
    More loving snarkiness – i just spent a good 10 minutes trying to walk mom through getting online to see the pic. How do you mistype http://www.masondixonknitting.com more than once?

  15. I love how this blog is chock full o’ recommendations for Music Consumption AND Kitchen Coordinates.
    Now, how many needles does the Ready-for-the-Apocalypse woman use in an average day?

  16. Wow, I love that yarn. Still have to find an excuse to get to Nashville for one of these…..

  17. ann, how cool the libarian knits with you. they are an undervalued group–mostly women–like nurses. we have few library knit circles in manhattan…did i read here that kay is thinking of getting something going? weekday, daytime, kay?

  18. Is that yarn legal? It’s calling to me in a way reminiscient of the Sirens, threatening to pull me away from my renal exam final. Must lash self to laptop! The only thing I don’t like about medical school is the way it’s interfering with my knitting

  19. Don’t know if Kay is up for any grand organizing — but I continue (in my pathetic way — I haven’t even managed to put up any posters) to agitate for a local (i.e. upper upper wash hts snb). Naomi — are you in the vicinity? Not sure about the local library options — but I’ll offer up my apartment! Bob Dylan can be played!

  20. I couldn’t imagine life without a knitting group! You could do a whole post on em’!

  21. I am 100% POSITIVE that Elvis’ dear momma was a knitter. Would love to celebrat with y’all on the birthday of The King, but will be held for ransom in DC that day. Le sigh… Good thing I’ve got my scale model, light-up Graceland house for company!

  22. Wish Shelby and I could trek up there, but we live so far from Opelika, Alabama, that I bet no one around here has even HEARD of it. T’would be a shame, too, cuz it’s right next to the Loveliest Village on the Plains where I wrote a few papers one time.
    I love knitting groups! But, you’re preaching to the choir on this one.
    I have a future knitter rooting around in my arms now. So I must be going.

  23. Oh, the scarves,
    Oh, oh the sca-arves,
    Oh the scarves,
    let them drape all over me..
    ‘Tis summer here (apparently), and too hot (or should be) to do scarves, and yet my fingers are itching to pick up some turqoise/raspberry/purple mohair and feather-and-fan it to the endiest of ends… and as for that Noro that isn’t doing much….
    PS I love the little header thingy right at the very very top above your blog title – I’m frightened of showing it to my husband lest he try to do something similar :P

  24. How funny that you used Opelika to pinpoint a place in Georgia! Love the co-ordinating apron and dishcloth – what a great idea!

  25. Could you send Marecha and Lindsey to upstate South Carolina? We seem to have a serious shortage of CNMs here, which means I have had to resort to — gasp — an OB. And I know they’re highly skilled and all, but they just don’t spend the time with you that midwives do. Always in a hurry, those docs.

  26. Ohh, I’m way beyond needing one (holy crap, I could be a grandmother, and that is WAY SCARY a thought), but I’m totally on board with the midwifery blog idea!! Totally cool!

  27. P.S. I was delivered by a midwife…random piece of information…I started to say that I was born by a midwife, but realized that didn’t make any sense so I had to rephrase it. My mom also used to think I should be a midwife. I dunno why, that’s kind of random, too.

  28. A dear friend of mine has been in Malawi, Africa working as a midwife for a year and a half. She has a very insightful blog: http://babycatching.blogspot.com/

  29. January 8 is also my birthday. I often listen to the radio on that day, wondering when the DJ will finally say, “…and today, we celebrate the birthday of that famous…Michele.” Hasn’t happened yet.

  30. Cheryl called me yesterday to ask if we stocked “that yarn” (we do have the Luna Park) – there are 6 wonderful colorways! And then she told me the date for next month – how is it that I am going to miss 3 whole months of KatL? December has 5 weeks, that’s why….It was bad enough missing Nov and Dec, but this is going too far…
    If I can, I’ll be at the February one – I’ll be weeks away from having Little Girl #2 – but with midwives nearby, shouldn’t be an issue, right? Hmmm…maybe I can get someone to work for me at the shop so I can sneak away for 2 hours on 1/8…believe me, I’m considering that For Real!

  31. I’ve even spent the night in Opelika!
    How’s about an Elvis haiku?
    black velvet painting
    sequins on spandex sparkle
    sex symbol always

  32. Hey — if any of y’all would like to support a midwifery-run business, check out http://www.brooklyngeneral.com. Or, if you’re in the neighborhood, check out the store itself. Owned by a friend and former colleague of mine — not a blogger, but a midwife (and a knitter extraordinaire) who always wanted to have a yarn shop!

  33. You know, if I hadnt a fear of flying, and free babysitting, and patient people to listen to a gal that doesnt get alot of adult conversation, I would certainly attend your lovely knitting group. I may be able to get over my fear of the airborn metal box of doom if you would all tolerate my 11 month old.
    What can I say? I dont get out much. You all just look and sound like so much fun.

  34. How did the woman who whas knitting the ribbing on the recycled felted mittens get the yarn attached to the bottome of the mitten so that she could start knitting the ribbing? I’m getting ready to sew up some mittens like that with my recycled wool sweaters and think that the ribbing idea is awesome! Thanks.

  35. Ooo, glad the provenance of the yarn is known now! I love it ;) I have no idea where to find some of that around me though!
    LOVE the little sweater cozy – adorable!
    xo,
    L

  36. I, too, like Jennifer, travel with allllll my needles. *g* I hope Jennifer saved the originl packaging for those needles. Addi has a lifetime guarantee for theirs but—and correct me if I’m wrong, ladies—ONLY if you have the original packaging.

  37. Oh Ann! I am so sorry now that I did not get there Monday! My youngest decided it was time to share his cold with mom, and I didn’t think y’all wanted it too!! However I was still knitting, so I was with you in spirit. I did finish the sweater I was working on last month, so will bring it in January. Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah to all.

  38. From another person in SC, we have some GREAT *licensed* midwives who do home births in this state. CNMs are limited to hospitals and drs’ practices. I’m about to have (1-2 weeks) my second child at home with my midwife in Florence and all are listed on the DHEC website. It’s such a better birth experience than hospitals with drugs and C-section risks. Here’s one link: http://cfmidwifery.org/mmoc/index.aspx
    There are a lot more. Support home birth– healthier for mom and baby. And midwives know *everything*– homeopathy and how to handle discomforts of pregnancy.

  39. I didn’t know eggs had legs, either. Check this out http://www.agoodyarn.net/PT_Cosy.htm.
    There they are in living color!
    Janice the knitwit

  40. Don’t miss a poem by Hans Ostrom, “Emily Dickinson and Elvis Presley in Heaven.”